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Feb 14, 2018

“There is no sincerer love than the love of food” (George Bernard Shaw)

by Becky Reid - Account Director

“There is no sincerer love than the love of food” (George Bernard Shaw)

According to Kantar UK, 7% of all households participated in a Meal Deal over the Valentine’s period last year.

With Valentine’s day sales in 2018 predicted to be up 5% on last year and shoppers expected to spend £650m on products and gifts, as suggested by the latest Mintel figures, more brands and retailers are trying to claim a piece of the ever lucrative Valentines Day pie.

In the current uncertain financial climate, the biggest trend seems to be to stay in and treat your loved one, rather than spend money going out for food. Retailers have jumped on this in 2018, with everyone from M&S, Tesco and CoOp to Iceland and Lidl offering their own mix of romantic foods to get your taste buds excited.

This has been noted by Kantar UK Analyst Ashley Anzie; ‘Whereas in the past you would have associated M&S as the go-to destination for Valentine’s food purchasing, over the years all retailers have started to muscle in on this territory (more so the discounters who are winning in all aspects of shopper behaviour in food)’.

One of the expensive options was £20 from Waitrose who offered shoppers a starter, a main, 2 sides, dessert and wine while at the other end of the spectrum was CoOp with a main and 2 sides or main and dessert for £6 offering.

Whilst strictly not a traditional meal deal to enjoy in your own home, Greggs deserves a special mention for offering its own style of Meal Deal – a four course set meal with a glass of fizz for £15 for two. However with only 5 of their 1,800 stores participating, it was a very highly sought after offer and sold out in 20 minutes of going live, so sadly the you will have to wait until 2019 for your chance to dine on pork puff pastry sliders and a brochette of doughnuts!

With Valentine’s Day grocery sales hitting £128m in 2017, according to Mintel, it will be interesting to see how this year fared in comparison.

Finally, and whilst not a meal deal, it's well worth including in this romantic line up… across the pond, McDonalds has gone for a different approach and are offering a diamond-encrusted burger ring – a whopping seven individual tiers of gems to create a eye watering £9,000 ring.

To be in with a chance to win this beauty, US based entrants simply had to tweet @McDonalds using the hashtag #BlingMacContest and pledge their love for the Big Mac. Judging will take place from 19th February with the winner contacted on 28th February, and whilst I am very sad that I was unable to enter, I hope the winner will be very happy and enjoy a long and loving relationship with their new Big Mac ring. Here’s hoping they bring the promotion to the UK in the future…!

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